Friday, July 30, 2010

Camping and Sourdough

I grew up in rural California. For fun during the summer, my older sister, her friends, and I - the perpetual tag along - would "camp out" in our back yards. We pitched our tents, cooked over the fire, and, as the graveyard was only a block from our house, told truly horrifying ghost stories, which usually meant I ended up back in my own bed.

Beth Sanders' yard was our favorite camping spot. Her mom, the coolest mom ever, introduced us to shish kabobs, smocking, Norwegian cookies, sourdough pancakes, and much, much more. This summer, my sister Beth reintroduced me to fabulous sourdough pancakes. She sent me home with some of her started, but we had a little accident, and...oops! Let's just say, I had to buy some on line.

Over the years, I've had various batches of sourdough starter, but this latest batch from Mistee and Ray Vinzant of Juneau, Alaska is one of the best, apart from my sister's of course. It comes with instructions and recipes. I've tried the pancakes and bread. Both turned out light, fluffy, and a bit tangy - just the way sourdough should be.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Astoria Column and Fort Clatsop

Wanting to do a bit of sight seeing on the way back from Washington, we decided to take a detour to Astoria, Oregon. All I knew about Astoria is that one of my all-time favorite silly movies, The Goonies, was filmed there, and Astoria is really close to Fort Clatsop. With that information, we drove into Astoria having no idea of what we should see. We got off the main drag through town following signs which said, 'This way to The Column.' What column? We were intrigued.

Yeah, they built a Huge Column on a hill above the town. Why? Well, the views are cool.

And as you can see, I did NOT climb up The Column as Gimpy's foot was still painful, and I didn't want to climb it by myself. Where is the glory in that? Besides, I think I've done my share of climbing up and down lighthouse stairs to last me a lifetime.
I did take this panoramic view on the top of the hill, though.

I have a bone to pick with Lewis and Clark. For years, I've tried to convince my husband that we need to move to the Pacific Northwest. I hate the heat! The weather seems pleasant, and, as I sunburn like a lobster every summer, I should live there, right? With my viking blood, I'm genetically programmed for cool and foggy coastal weather. My husband, a history teacher who does not sunburn hardly at all, always brings up the fact that, of the more than three months the Lewis and Clark expedition were at Fort Clatsop, on only 12 days it did not rain. He says he needs the sun. The debate still continues!

It is surprising to see how small the fort was.
I'll have to admit, being cooped up in these tiny rooms all winter with fifty or so other people would not be pleasant.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Baby Blues

Today, Julianne, our youngest, turned 17, and I'm feeling like the time we've had with her is flying by far too fast! With only a year left at home before she's off to college, I'm missing her already.

Who will willingly go to Ikea with me anymore?
Who's gonna be my personal stylist?
Who's gonna eat my, um, not so great food...well, there is John who almost never complains :-)

Love you Jules!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Views of Mt. Rainier

No trip to Washington is complete without a visit to Mt. Rainier.

Visitors center

On a glacier

A small home with character I wouldn't mind spending my retirement/vacation in.

Rainier at dusk
My sister used to tell her Sunday School class that God lives on Mt. Rainier. I think she may just be right.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Northwest Trek

Went to Northwest Trek near Seattle with the family, and had a great time. The rotten pictures are taken by yours truly, the best ones are taken by my niece, Jennifer Gardner.

Jennifer -
Jennifer of Mark and Jasmine

Mine :-)

More of mine..I have a thing for Moose

Notice how I got every one's best side!
Of course mine; I love flowers!
and again, mine. Gotta get better on the wildlife photography!
Once again, thanks, Jennifer! I owe you big time...

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Seattle and a Korean Dinner

A couple of weeks ago, we drove to Seattle to say goodbye to my son and his wife, who went to Korea. We also had a good visit with my sister's family while they came along with us as we did the tourist thing.

View of Shasta on our way out of California.

Interesting place - Infernos Brick Oven Pizza under Lord's Gym - outside of Olympia.

Bremerton feed the seagulls.

Nice day for a sail (my favorite thing to do!!!!). You almost don't need a boat.

No, not our yatch :-)
Seattle from the Puget Sound
Mark and Jasmine, along with the rest of us, 13 in all.

Took the bus to get to Pike Place Market.

Love fish!
No, they weren't throwing fish. You have to actually buy the fish first, and, as we were invited to a traditional Korean dinner made by my nephew, Jonathan, and his wife, Jennifer, I had to forgo the fish.

Just so you know, I love, love Korean food. Over the past few years, I've had some, but not enough. I even like kimchi!
Wish I could remember the Korean words, but this is fried pork belly, something like unsalted bacon, cooking on a convex-shaped frying pan.

Rice cooked with small, red beans.

Put it all together like a taco, but on lettuce...
spiced up with soybean dipping paste and sesame oil....
Yum, yum! Thanks Jonathan and Jennifer!